BCS ethical dilemmas

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  • Hippocrates
    His most famous aphorism is the very first one:
    Life is short, and art long;the crisis fleeting; experience perilous, and decision difficult.The physician must not only be preparedto do what is right oneself,but also to make the patient,the attendants, and externals cooperate
  • Ethics deals with such questions at all levels. Its subject consists of the fundamental issues of practical decision making, and its major concerns include the nature of ultimate value and the standards by which human actions can be judged right or wrong.
    The terms ethics and morality are closely related. It is now common to refer to ethical judgments or to ethical principles where it once would have been more accurate to speak of moral judgments or moral principles. These applications are an extension of the meaning of ethics. In earlier usage, the term referred not to morality itself but to the field of study, or branch of inquiry, that has morality as its subject matter. In this sense, ethics is equivalent to moral philosophy.
  • It is possible to ignore situations until you have to do something as the Dilemmas will tell you – what you choose in these circumstances may well depend on you. Are you cautious, methodical, a person who checks their information thoroughly before taking action?
    Business ethics defined as
    “The study of standards which business should observe in their dealings, over and above compliance with the law”
  • national audit office and use of consultants
  • Likely to be only as good as their last job
    No partners to support
    No need to sell-on services and personnel
    May not have full range of skills but then wont try and sell what they do not have usually.
  • EXPERIENCE CV – references, demonstrable experience
    QUALIFIED Continued training has up to date and relevant qualifications etc.
    PASSES ON LEARNING - Helps others and is one from whom advice is sought by others; Everyone should have several mentors
    INSURED – Correct amounts and premiums up to date
    PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIP - Member of and Support to Trade Association
  • All of our members agree to abide by the BCS Code of Conduct and to observe the
    provisions of the BCS Code of Good Practice.
    BCS Code of Conduct
    The BCS Code of Conduct sets out the professional standards required by BCS as a
    condition of membership.
    It applies to members of all grades, including students, and affiliates, and also
    non-members who offer their expertise as part of the BCS Professional Advice
    Register.
    BCS Code of Good Practice
    The BCS Code of Good Practice describes standards of practice relating to the
    contemporary multifaceted demands found in IT.
    It is intended to help you personally as a member of BCS by providing a framework of
    guidance into which your particular needs can be fitted.
  • Confidentiality?
  • BCS ethical dilemmas

    1. 1. BRITISH COMPUTER SOCIETY Consultancy Specialist Group A joint event with the BCS Ethics Forum. “Ethical Dilemmas“ Date/Time: Wednesday 12th March 2008 6.00pm Venue: BCS London Office, First Floor, The Davidson Building, 5 Southampton Street, London WC2E 7HA Speakers: Session 1: Clive Bonny & John McGarvey, Independent Consultants Session 2: Dr Penny Duquenoy, BCS Ethics Forum Strategic Panel
    2. 2. Session 1        History of Ethics; Definitions; Ethics Today; Ethics – is this a problem for Consultants? Ethics and the Independent Consultant; Consulting Dilemmas; Profiting from ‘Good Practice’.
    3. 3. Ethics – A Little History     From Ancient Greece about 460 BC; Hippocrates may have been the first proponent of ethical behaviour; Philosophy is the discipline concerned with the questions of how one should live (ethics); what sorts of things exist and what are their essential natures (metaphysics); what counts as genuine knowledge (epistemology); and what are the correct principles of reasoning (logic); An underlying thought system for moral judgements and behaviour.
    4. 4. Ethics - Definition  Ethics - also called ’Moral philosophy’ the discipline concerned with what is morally good and bad, right and wrong. The term is commonly applied to any system or theory of moral values or principles;  Ethics - the fundamental issues of practical decision making and its major concerns include the nature of ‘ultimate value’ and the standards by which human actions can be judged. Source: Encyclopædia Britannica
    5. 5. Ethics Today    Today the word Ethics is often substituted for Morals; Focus is on ‘Business ethics’ and how this affects the consultant in their day to day working life; Is it important? Can ethics just be ignored and carry on as normal?
    6. 6. The Trouble with Consultants …     Public opinion low; Successful assignments do not make news; Government (biggest user of Consultants and Interim Managers) rarely has anything positive to say; NAO says that there is some way to go before good value for money is achieved overall for use of consultants.
    7. 7. Independent Consultants      Client Focussed. The Client’s needs are all important; No ‘Conflict of Interest’ with Practice Manager; No pressure to find work for other colleagues; Lower cost base means VFM rate flexibility; Access to associates for specialist skills when required.
    8. 8. Ethical Consultant       Takes assignments only in those fields where they can confidently predict that they can help their client; Is professionally qualified in these areas and keeps up their CPD; Acts as a guide or mentor to junior or less experienced consultants; Has professional indemnity and public liability insurance as necessary; Subscribes to a professional body which has a code of professional conduct; Supports their professional body with their time or ‘pro bono’ consulting as appropriate.
    9. 9. Consulting Dilemmas Consulting Dilemmas from Clive Bonny www.consult-smp.com Please respond to the following situations according to what you would ACTUALLY do, NOT what you think you SHOULD do. This requires some tough but honest internal dialogue! If this dialogue is too tough please consider yourself a twin of the main player, and decide how you would react to your twin AFTER they have taken this course of action. When you have decided, please share this decision within your syndicate to discuss all individual responses. Discussions will be held without disclosing identities outside the syndicate to ensure confidentiality. A nominated person will record the way the discussion develops without attributing who said what.
    10. 10. Dilemma 1 1. You have quoted time and materials pricing for two similar assignments both requiring preparatory work. To your delight both clients order the work but a dilemma has been created. The preparatory work on one job can also be used on the other job. Potentially this reduces your costs and allows you to reduce pricing on one or both jobs. What would you do?
    11. 11. Dilemma 2 2. You and a colleague have worked hard with much time negotiating a bid which you have just won. You are reviewing your colleague’s bid offer and notice that the client pre-qualification question requiring a specific CPD certification was not answered. The client and your colleague appear to have overlooked this. You do not have the required certification. What would you do?
    12. 12. Dilemma 3 3. You have developed a successful client relationship for some years. Your main client contact has indicated to you confidentially s(he) is considering a move to a consulting supplier who competes with yourself. You were planning to recruit a person with the same skills and experience. What would you do?
    13. 13. Dilemma 4 4. You are in the middle of delivering a successful project with your employed team. The client wishes to extend the work and has emailed you asking you confirm within 48 hours that you have the capacity to deliver more as time is of the essence for a decision. Your resources are currently fully committed but you are confident you can sub-contract to an associate to deliver. However the subcontractors are on holiday and cannot be contacted within 48 hours. What would you do?
    14. 14. Profiting from Good Practice Take an ethical approach at all times by:  Encouraging Clients to evaluate and measure the benefits of any work conducted by Consultants;  Agree from outset to share any IPR;  Protect personal methods but transfer Knowledge; and  Leave the business change successfully embedded.
    15. 15. End of Session 1 Many thanks for listening to the presentation – Please take a break if you wish …
    16. 16. Session 2  Introducing the BCS Ethics Forum
    17. 17. Minimising ethical dilemmas - ethics in practice Dr. Penny Duquenoy Manager, BCS Ethics Forum www.bcs.org/forums/ethics
    18. 18. (Business) Ethics and personal values Revisiting examples (session 1) Values from business ethics:  integrity, honesty, quality, loyalty  Professionalism, responsibility  Mutual respect, fairness and meritocracy  Leadership, responsibility  Client focus and teamwork  Add ………………… ? ? See: www.ibe.org.uk/examples
    19. 19. Big business and values … Example: 3i Group plc (world leader in private equity and venture capital)   Core values: “We believe that the highest standard of integrity is essential in business. In all our activities, we aim to:    Be commercial and fair Respect the needs of our shareholders, our staff, our suppliers, the local community and the businesses in which we invest; Maintain our integrity and professionalism; and strive for continual improvement and innovation
    20. 20. Benefits of ‘being good’ The ‘benefits of ‘being good’ are:    - building trust and confidence - setting your standards - reducing 'dilemma opportunities'
    21. 21. Resolving dilemmas    resolving the dilemmas - practical guidelines Working through case studies, understanding points of conflict, and clarifying priorities Determining your ethical position
    22. 22. Sample: BCS Code of Conduct  The public interest   Duty to relevant authority   E.g. conflicts of interest Duty to the profession   E.g. legitimate rights of third parties E.g. encourage, support, act with integrity Professional competence and integrity – e.g.    am I familiar with the technology involved, or have I worked with similar technology before? have I successfully completed similar assignments or roles in the past? can I demonstrate adequate knowledge of the specific business application and requirements successfully to undertake the work?
    23. 23. Sample code of good practice BCS Code of Good Practice         Maintain Your Technical Competence Adhere to Regulations Act Professionally as a Specialist Use Appropriate Methods and Tools Participate Maturely Respect the Interests of your Customers Promote Good Practices within the Organisation Represent the Profession to the Public Available from the BCS website: www.bcs.org

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